21 pages 42 minutes read

D. H. Lawrence

Whales Weep Not!

Fiction | Poem | Adult | Published in 1932

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Related Poems

"The Elephant Is Slow To Mate" by D. H. Lawrence (1929)

A useful comparandum for “Whales Weep Not!”, “The Elephant Is Slow To Mate” deals with similar themes. Lawrence’s elephants, like his whales, are large and mysterious mammals. Again, Lawrence concentrates on their sexual passion, especially as powered by their “massive blood” (Line 22). But unlike the spry and seemingly ageless whales of “Whales Weep Not!”, Lawrence’s elephants are tempered and slowed by their age (and, by extension, their wisdom).

"Tortoise Gallantry" by D. H. Lawrence (1921)

“Tortoise Gallantry” is another Lawrence poem focused on sexual relations between animals. Unlike in his mammal poems, the poet distances the male tortoise as other and strange. Where the whales are driven on by their hot-blooded passion, the “reptilian” tortoise seems strangely emotionless, driven to reproduce by nothing more than “grim necessity.”

"Kissing and Horrid Strife" by D. H. Lawrence (1932)

In “Kissing and Horrid Strife,” another entry in the Last Poems, Lawrence explicitly contrasts “the evil world-soul of today” with the blissful “tiny wavelets of the sea.” This poem solidifies Lawrence’s image of the natural opposition between civilization and the primordial, sensual ocean.